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Apr 10, 2020, 05:18 PM
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Build Log

Alien Aircraft Arrow Master


Well, welcome to my first build log. I've been in RC for about 30 years (OMG), on and off. I've been retired for about 4 so it is mostly on now. When I started, to fly you built. Now you can get really nice ARFs so you don't need to build as much. I started to get back into building a couple of years ago with a PT-40. I also built a couple of Flite Test models as well. I just finished an Ultra-Sport 60 that was supposed to be finished last February, but got done, finally, this February. Time is elastic when you're retired.

I wanted to add a biplane to my fleet, I had built a Sig Hog-Bipe in the 90's, but it didn't survive to the 2000's. I looked around for kits and short kits for a bipe appropriate for a 15cc gas, ignition motor and settled on the Arrow Master. I looked into the Balsa USA Phaeton 90, ordering the plans to see how difficult it would be. It looked like the building might be a little more than I'm ready for. The instructions are basically, make it look like the drawings. I was also concerned about my ability to bend the wire cabane struts. The Arrow Master seemed to be within my building skill level.

I plan on installing an NGH GT17 gasoline motor. The ignition will be controlled with an optical ignition switch. I will be using Hangtime Hobbies A123 battery packs for the receiver and ignition. The receiver will be a Spektrum AR8010T with integrated telemetry. Telemetry sensors for cylinder head temperature and RPM will be installed. Spektrum A6110 HV digital standard servos will be used.

I plan only one modification, I will add a battery tray aft of the wing saddle to hold the receiver battery. The ignition battery and module will be forward of the wing, below the fuel tank. This is for balance and to separate the ignition system from the control system a bit.

I received the Kit Monday. Inventory of the parts revealed one broken piece of 1/4 in triangle stock. I also found some inconsitancies in the parts inventory. The pictures of the laser cut sheets were mislabeled. I'm attaching PDF files with my marked up inventory list. (in 3 sections to not exceed 3 MB per file.
Last edited by DaveGell; Apr 10, 2020 at 06:08 PM. Reason: correct typo
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Apr 10, 2020, 05:21 PM
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First Steps


Now to start. My goal is to make the pile of wood, look like the finished picture - can I do it?
Apr 10, 2020, 05:29 PM
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Tail Surfaces


The instructions begin with the tail surfaces. The structure is a laser cut base, sheeted on both sides with 1/16 balsa. The instructions go one surface at a time, but I paralleled the work, gluing the laser cut parts for each, then skinning them.

The stab is in two parts, divided from tip to tip about mid way. The elevators have a small section at the trailing edge near the center line. The fin has a forward and aft section and the rudder has a trailing edge extension near the bottom.
Apr 10, 2020, 05:47 PM
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Skinning the tail surfaces


The skins for the horizontal stab and the fin are two edge glued 3/32 x 4 x 24 inch balsa. Two pieces are used for the stab, and one for the fin. I'm using Sig-Bond Aliphatic to do the sheeting. (It what I had on hand) I would usually use titebond-II but my bottle was empty, and I'm staying in. The Sig is water based, so it can cause the sheets to curl a bit, so I'm using lots of weight. The metal blocks are machinist 1-2-3 blocks, each of which is slightly less than 2 lbf. The blue tubes are weights from physical therapy. The larger are 2 lbf, the smaller 1.
Apr 10, 2020, 05:56 PM
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Skinning Elevators and Rudder.


I'm preparing to skin the control surfaces to skin. I have 3 sheets of 4 inch wide stock left. The elevators are less than 3 inches wide, two sheets will do. The rudder is a little wider. Now I now why the instructions have you save the off-cuts from the horizontal stabilizer sheeting.
Apr 10, 2020, 08:42 PM
I just want to go fly!
walter3rd's Avatar
Looking great! I almost built this kit but chose the sig hog. Sounds like you already built that one. I’ll be following along. Any thoughts on finishing colors?
Apr 10, 2020, 11:15 PM
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No thoughts about color yet. I'd like to try something like the scalloped edges on the catalog photo, but I'm not sure how to go about that. Most of my color schemes have been basic straight lines. I really liked the Sig Hog-Bipe. That one was covered in a sort-of between the wars US Air Corps colors, dark blue fuselage, yellow wings, red and white striped rudder with Stars on the wing. It looked good, but I don't have a photo of it.
Apr 11, 2020, 08:17 AM
I just want to go fly!
walter3rd's Avatar
Beautiful ultrasport. Always liked that one. I did desert camo on my hog.
Apr 11, 2020, 03:55 PM
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Dave, One way to do the scallops with monokote etc. is to use cans, jars, or lids of the desired size to do the layout on the underside of the material. Make sure you have enough to wrap over the leading edge. After cutting out remove the backing and moisten the wing with a water/ammonia mixture and apply like a water slide decal. Allow to dry overnight and then go over it with a warm, not hot sealing iron. Hot enough to activate the glue but without any shrinking. I commonly use a woodpecker on the underlying layer to reduce the possibility of bubbles. Good luck with you build.

Regards
Dennis
Apr 11, 2020, 05:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3rd Try
Dave, One way to do the scallops with monokote etc. is to use cans, jars, or lids of the desired size to do the layout on the underside of the material. Make sure you have enough to wrap over the leading edge. After cutting out remove the backing and moisten the wing with a water/ammonia mixture and apply like a water slide decal. Allow to dry overnight and then go over it with a warm, not hot sealing iron. Hot enough to activate the glue but without any shrinking. I commonly use a woodpecker on the underlying layer to reduce the possibility of bubbles. Good luck with you build.

Regards
Dennis
Dennis, thanks for the info, that would work on wing and fin. Iím wondering about the fuselage. Iíve used the windex method in the past
Apr 12, 2020, 05:24 AM
I just want to go fly!
walter3rd's Avatar
I’m always very impressed with complex designs especially over open bays on planes. I enjoy the covering process a lot but lack the skill for really complex and amazing designs like some I see on this site. My hats off to all the master coverers
Apr 12, 2020, 11:35 AM
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Wingtips


I am building the 60 in wing version of the plane, because with the possibly heavier engine, ignition and 2nd battery, I thought the extra wing area would be welcome. The wingtips are an optional kit. The kit contains 4 light ply ribs, two sheets of laser cut parts, and 16 pieces of 1/8 in ply balsa sheet.

The leading edges are made of two pieces of 1/8 in balsa, that must be laminated. In reading the instructions, (yes I've read the manual several times ), there are many parts to be laminated. Laser cutting is limited to about 1/8 in thick balsa. Somewhere I saw a trick that can be used to laminate with CA. You pin the parts together, with pins as perpendicular to the pieces as possible, Fig 2. Then spread them apart, Fig 3, applying some CA between them. Finally press the parts together using the pins as guides, Fig 4. It worked like a charm.
Last edited by DaveGell; Apr 15, 2020 at 10:37 AM. Reason: Correct parts list
Apr 12, 2020, 09:46 PM
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Completed Wing Tips


Wing tips are now done, and roughed out. Sanding the leading edge to shape will wait until they are mounted.
Apr 12, 2020, 09:57 PM
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Good Idea, too late.


I've completed and sheeted the control surfaces, joining the elevator halves. The instructions call for shaping the edges of the surfaces then slotting for hinges. I like to hinge first, before shaping the control surface leading edge, because it is easier to get the slots or holes in straight. I'm using Robart hinge points. After drilling the six holes on the stabilizer and elevators, I realized that there would have been an easier way.

The core of the surfaces is 1/8 inch sheet. The hinge points are 1/8 inch diameter. Before I sheeted the surfaces, I could have cut slots in the cores, 1/8 inch wide at the hinge locations and avoided all of the drilling. Must remember for next time.
Apr 12, 2020, 10:17 PM
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Building table upgrade


My building board is too short to build the 55 inch upper wing, which is built in one piece. My building board is 48 inches. My larger bench is 60 inches and has a flat top. In moving I lost the Homosote board I used as a pinning surface for the bench. For those of you who don't know, this is a recycled paper insulating board, produced since 1916 with recycled NJ newspaper. (http://www.homasote.com/about) Out here, I couldn't get any. In Michigan Home Depot and Lowes carry it. In Texas neither did. Here in WA Home Depot carries a similar, Canadian, product, but I choose not to go out during these pandemic days.

Looking on line, I found quarter inch thick cork. Pricy compared to the insulating board, but delivered to my door. I ordered it. It came yesterday, so I took a break from the build to do my work table.


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